All Reader Reviews of...
235 E. 4th St., New York, NY, 10009
nr. Ave. B
Made to Order
By Cuaimo on 2/20/2008
I have been to E.U. before and enjoyed it quite a bit, in fact, their roasted foie gras blew me away last time. However, here is my problem, and E.U is not alone in this, but an offender nonetheless - we HAD to order everything at once. I had ordered a bottle of wine and a charcuterie plate, in hopes of having something to start while we figured out what we might want next (i.e. just stick to tapas and small plates, or apps and an etree). Unfortunately, it is verboten to do so apparently. Instead, they slammed our table with the charcuterie plate and apps at the same time. I understand the need to turn tables, and there is nothing really on the menu that needs to be cooked for an hour before being served so as to tell the chef early on. It's just unneccesary. If you cant just have tapas and small plates that you order as you go along while having wine or beer, then don't put it on the menu.
They should change the name to "Eee-yew"
By Sandy MacDonald on 2/13/2008
Crowds were not a problem when we went (early on a week night). The problem was that every single dish came out tasting essentially the same: greasy and salty. If the vaunted "octopus alla plancha" is indeed grilled and not fried, I'd be willing to eat my hat -- but not, under any circumstances, another bite of poorly trimmed, grease-drenched tentacle, the haunch end rife with surprise mucilaginous bits. The waitress very nicely and knowledgeably described the ornate preparations that go into the gnocchi with guinea hen sugo (apparently the bird is left to age overnight: whatever), but it tasted almost exactly like the octopus -- which is to say tasteless, beyond an impression of oily, over-salted richness. Same goes for the "dirty shorty" -- a short rib sandwich not far removed from a Philly cheesesteak. Luckily, we didn't opt for any further entrees (too shocked by the $24-32 price range: we're in Alphabet City, folks!) The micro-helping of salad that accompanied the shortie was the final blow: it, too, was heavily oiled and salted. Fearing the worst (more of the same), we forswore desserts.
By ebrugman on 2/12/2008
i foolishly decided to give this restaurant a second chance after a poor first experience. horrible service, inflated prices for mediocre food, bad layout...shall i go on. im english and i can tell you that this is NOT a gastropub!
By sanps on 11/10/2007
Went on a Saturday night with no reservation around 8:30. The host sat us straight away. Our waitress was lovely and attentive with a good and helpful grasp of the menu.The food was good, a little salty overall. It was crowded in a good way, not cramped. Yes.
Overall a Pleasant Place
By tigrknot on 11/5/2007
Hostess was very pleasant (nice change of pace for the city). Wait staff hovered; too many assigned to one table. Ordered pastry basket and no plates were given. When a space is tight, it is OK for the staff to ask for cup/glass to be moved closer. No need to for the staff to stretch over the whole table as if they are going for the finish line in the 100 meter dash. Restaurant Design: Slightly pretentious but cozy (faux weathered coffee cups were a bit much). Extremely poor choice of bathrooms placement/seating nearby. Some options: remove seating by the bathroom, move bathrooms altogether to a more secluded location and definitely put much better ventilation in the bathrooms. It was disgusting to eat a meal that close to the bathroom. Also, change the windows on the bathrooms door. Windows are opaque but I really do not need to get a blurred glimpse of people taking care of nature. Disgusting! Seating by bathrooms was tight. Cushioned leather seating needs to have a higher back on it. I want to be comfortable at Sunday brunch and not feel like I am posing for school pictures.
By rcm on 10/22/2007
After reading some reviews and checking out the menu, I had very high expectations of this place. On Saturday, a group of 8 of us set out for our first E.U. dining experience. As one of our party members said, this place looks great on paper. Unfortunately, it fell incredibly short of our expectations. I will say that the space is good and it has potential. However, the execution was poor. I think we could have gotten past the crappy ipod playlist on throughout the night, had the food been decent. Our first hint should have been the dry as sawdust, wonder bread that was set out. A few of us ordered burgers, of which they had a couple of options that sounded good. Those of us who ordered medium rare burgers, ran the gambit of rare to well done. It's disappointing to have something so simple completely screwed up. Not sure if these other reviews were written by employees, but I live in the area and i don't believe I'll be going back.
Excellent food - atrocious service
By FMK on 5/9/2007
Waited 45 minutes for a table that we had reserved, waiters had no idea what they were doing. They actually spilled wine and water on me at different points in the evening. Their apology was " It's white wine so it probably won't stain". Dessert was to be comp'ed - apparently the manager forgot to post the waiter of that...After giving an average tip the waiter had the audacity to come out and follow us on the street and ask for more tip. It's a shame that the food was great. Wait staff needs to learn a few things - makes an excellent chef look bad.
By soitgoes239 on 3/12/2007
The atmosphere is perfect, and the food is great. A bit expensive, and the service was slow at times, but it's hard to complain when you're in such a beatiful, cozy place. Highlights: the grilled octopus, wine selection, desserts.
By Peanutd on 3/10/2007
I cannot express really what a wonderful value I found E.U. to be. The food was spectacular and the beer choices pleased me for I am really a beer drinker. Now if only the rest of the City would catch on, it'd be a great energetic little gem. The decor is well thought-out, consistent, and really has a lot of charm--sort of serene. I went on a Wednesday night and it was very quiet (it was after 10pm and very cold out), but even so, it was lovely. It appears that they are operating as if they were well established in the neighborhood already. It is a place that will be for a while on my mind each time I consider having a dinner out-- because when does such a great chef come so cheap?
Perfect combination in a dining experience
By designfiend on 2/21/2007
I expect every aspect of the experience to be no less than perfect - a great environment is no good if the food is average. Good food is pointless if paired with an uninspring wine. And all is for nought if the service isn't exceptional. European Union did not disappoint in any regard. The food was stellar, and the combinations of suggested appetizers and main courses was unique and not commonplace. The wine pairings suggested by the staff were also excellent. I would have tried them just for the environment alone. You know if AVROKO is involved then serious thought goes into the environment. The lighting (by Niche Modern) sets the mood for the restaurant - luscious! We went on a Friday night, a little bit on the early side and by the time we left it was packed, so either make reservations or go on a off-peak evening. European Union is a great place to take a date. Haven't tried the weekend brunch yet but looks to be in my near future.
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